Four Month Journal: A new hope

Thanks for still believing in me. 

One year ago, I ended with this line – a plea, almost – in my first four month journal. Arguably, in this next chapter of my life, I still need all the support, encouragement, and love from my friends and family as ever before. A new year, a new me, doesn’t change that.

Already, after the first 100 days of my freshman college experience, I was having my doubts. Spread too thin, in search of possessions lost, I craved the promise of a rest, compromised ignorantly for self-fulfillment. I thought I knew what I always wanted, I thought I knew what was to be my life.

But the doubts continued, and I struggled for a sense of identity, wondering all along: Am I going to be happy in the end? After confessing my fears to colleagues and friends alike, I realized – thankfully – that I was not alone.

And, looking back, I’ve hinted at what I’ve always wanted to do – somewhere beneath all the clutter and words and worries I carry with me like bags of sand – but I was petrified to actually say it out loud. To admit that I made the wrong decision, at first. To admit that I truly just don’t know where I’m going with all this passion and love for learning. To admit that I’m just taking each day as it comes, with renewed gratitude and a “new hope” at every opportunity that comes my way.

Since that first year of discovery, choices, and revelations, I’ve begun to define myself – to dare to speak and let my voice be heard – to begin my own journey, on my own terms. To question life, to always ask why, and to breathe in and out like the little yogi that I’m becoming.

I’m embarking on this exciting educational avenue, called the Bachelor of Specialized Studies, as I hinted in my earlier blog posts from the semester. And during this winter hiatus, between the frenzied corners of two semesters, I shall be drafting my proposal to complete my undergraduate education in “Cross-continental Communications” – or something like that.

It wasn’t until tracking, and shamelessly cataloging, all of the events and voices heard around the world at COP21 in Paris this past November (international conference hosted by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) that I realized: This is the world I want to join.

A world where actions and words and leaders can inspire HOPE for a generation of globally aware citizens. I could debate the cause and occurrence of natural disasters, of floods, of droughts, of food insecurity struggles reverberating around the world – I could even just catalog the contours of the land from an academic ivory tower, report about it for my hometown newspaper, or ignore it altogether – but I simply cannot deny that the world desperately needs committed actions from a people all working together.

We can no longer afford to think in “others,” or “enemies.” These are language barriers, constructed in our private social groups, designed to assure safety and stability. But they are inadequate structures when it comes to crafting global solutions.

I understand, and am aware, that there are people, political actors and spokespeople for various nation states that deny cooperation. Individuals that still design laws barring the spread of ideas and exchange of goods and services. And I am fully aware that some pessimistic Earthlings believe that the world will never come together for compromise, that acceptance of all views is unattainable, hopeless even.

But, I’m going to have to try.

I want to bring the world stories of people who are directly impacted by changing climate phenomenon, and who feel that their voice is being undermined. To bridge the gap between education and understanding, along with political solidarity. To inspire individual change, grassroots action, and pressing public concerns. A world where both humans – and their environment – are cherished, respected, and honored for their differences.

Does this sound like a lofty ambition? An unattainable occupation? Not so, I say. Not after I witnessed what individual agents at COP21 can do to invoke a powerful political statement of cooperation. I believe that linking the world through environmental and human respected policy can bring about a more peaceful, more sustainable planet for ALL of Earth’s inhabitants.

And I’ve only just begun.

Until next month,

BNB, xo

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